Activation @ SpotHero

activation team picture

What We Do?

The Activation Squad is on a mission to create space for life and to empower people to get everywhere, easier! By designing better ways to reserve and pay for parking, we make life easier and our world more connected. We value trust, reliability, remaining curious and focusing on positive outcomes in a lighthearted & non-judgmental atmosphere. 

Our Mission Statement: “Streamlining and optimizing the purchase process so a user can complete a purchase on the website and park their car with confidence and minimal confusion.”

What Are We Solving Now?

We are focused on improving SpotHero’s checkout & redemption experience. We recently made improvements to our parking pass and error messaging on our web and mobile web applications. When drivers find a spot and have the full intention of making a purchase, we want to make it as easy as possible for them to pay for the spot and use the product! We aim to reduce confusion and provide more clarity so when drivers book they don’t have to call our Customer Heroes for simple questions.

What Technology Are We Using?

Front End Stack: Frontend is a React Single Page App (SPA) that runs on Node.JS. We build in React/Redux, Chakra UI, SCSS, Jest/React Testing Library/Cypress, and Webpack. We maintain a private npm repository with shareable UI components, utility functions, Babel/ESLint/Prettier configurations, and custom tasks.

Back End Stack: Monolith using Django/Python/PostgreSQL. We are moving our Monolith to a Modular Monolith, using Domain Driven Design. We also use Docker, deploy our apps via Kubernetes. We use Kafka for asynchronous-, and gRPC for synchronous service-to-service communication.

Testing and Monitoring: Defect/Test Management: Jira, TestRail, Confluence. APi: Postman. Web/Mobile-Web: Charles, Proxyman, Testflight, BrowserStack. Monitoring: Sentry, SumoLogic, Grafana. Deployment: Concourse. Web test framework – pytest, selenium

Who Are We?

Sunghwan Cho

Sr. Engineer II, Backend

Background: Originally from Seoul, South Korea. Sunghwan studied Electrical & Computer engineering at University of Seoul. And he had worked for a security software company for 8 and half years. Decided to move to Canada in 2017. Since then, he has been in Toronto. For almost two years, he has built and maintained the Rest API in SpotHero. His hobbies include reading, playing tennis and basketball, and playing board games with friends. 

Favorite Superhero & Why: Iron Man, He’s funny and pretty cool.

Eric Dobroveanu

Sr. Engineer I, Backend

Background: Born in the suburbs, now living in Chicago. I’ve been an avid gamer my whole life which led me into software engineering. Passionate about technology and an avid cook. I love to tinker and make things.

Favorite Superhero & Why: Gandalf, while not technically a superhero, he is wise, stubborn and never gives up hope. A leader anyone could follow. Also he’s a Maiar and totally badass

Christopher Eden

QA Analyst III

Background: Christopher grew up a nomad and eventually found his adopted home in Baltimore almost 10 years ago. He was born in Germany and moved regularly throughout his life living in several different countries and states. After completing high school at an international school in the Netherlands he moved back to the states and did his undergrad in History at Florida International University in Miami. Christopher’s biggest passion is soccer which he regularly plays and spends too much time watching. When he isn’t trying to relive his glory days on the pitch he can be found somewhere eating and drinking with his wife.

Favorite Superhero & Why: Dayman because he is the fighter of the Nightman, the champion of the Sun, a master of Karate and friendship for everyone.

Mick Johnson

Sr. Engineer II, Front End

Background: Originally from Louisville, Kentucky, Mick Johnson studied English and Film Studies at the University of South Carolina. It wasn’t until he was toying around between classes while teaching English in Taiwan that he discovered his love for tech. Drawn to Chicago by his recently transplanted childhood friends, he moved there to pursue his new passion and has been there ever since. His hobbies include reading, playing and designing board + video games, whittling, and writing.

Favorite Superhero & Why: Godzilla – he’s a hero…right? Gotta love a good monster fight.

Michael Olson

Product Designer

Background: Michael is thoroughly midwestern, bouncing from Minnesota to Indiana to Chicago. He grew up in Photoshop & Dreamweaver, making a slew of bad websites and graphics before he was 12. Then he got a Graphic Design degree, and people started paying him to make slightly better websites. For a few years he designed and built websites, honing his design and frontend development chops. After this company was acquired, he took the opportunity to pivot to a UX design role, in which he helped design multiple mobile and web apps from the ground up and conducted a number of pivotal user studies. He joined SpotHero in late 2021 as a Product Designer where he strives to not just solve problems, but also find them. The road to seamless parking is paved with problems aplenty, so he’s lucky to have a fantastic team of people along for the ride.

Favorite Superhero & Why: Spider-Man, because he’s somehow always the scrappy nerd underdog while also being able to lift a freakin’ train car. He also messes up A LOT but always tries to do better.

Becca Rabinowitz

Sr. Product Manager


8 years ago, Becca moved from Texas to Chicago to join SpotHero as the 15th employee. When SpotHero needed 20% MoM growth to close its Series B, Becca called hundreds of events to list SpotHero as the recommended way to park. This acquisition strategy helped SpotHero achieve its growth goal, close the round of funding, and has since become key to the team’s market expansion efforts! Since then Becca has worked on SpotHero’s first brand identity, radio ads, out of home campaigns, SpotHero for Business, Lyft, and is now part of the Activation team working to improve our user experience. Becca views SpotHero as not only as a place of work but also the foundation of her Chicago community. Becca graduated from the University of Texas in Austin with a degree in Marketing and Accounting and just received her MBA at Northwestern Kellogg. Outside of work you can find Becca getting 10k steps/day up and down  the beachfront or practicing her favorite hobby of all time – snowboarding! 

Favorite Superhero & Why:

Does Hermione count? She can do magic, is a straight-A student, and carries the team – Harry and Ron would be lost without her!

Matt Ritsman

Sr. Engineer II, Front End

Background: Matt grew up in Wisconsin and studied Studio Art and Media Ecology in college. He worked in advertising as an art director for several years before realizing he was more interested in building the websites and applications he was designing. Matt lives in Chicago and has been a front end engineer at SpotHero since 2019. Outside of work Matt enjoys hanging out with his wife and kids, volunteering, reading, live music, planting stuff in his tiny yard, cargo bikes, and occasionally DJing at bars.

Favorite Superhero & Why: You! For reading this far! And also the Incredible Hulk.

Demonze Spruiel-Rose

Sr. Engineer II, Level 2 Support

Background: Born and raised on the Southside of Chicago, Demonze received his degree in Media Management from Columbia College Chicago. He worked for one of the first independent music companies in the country after college to partner with Apple on something you may have heard of… iTunes! I arrived at SpotHero in 2018 to become our first Level Two Support Engineer. In my role I am the bridge between multiple Engineering teams and our Hero department, where I triage and report bugs on our mobile app and website. I also support our QA Engineers in a backup role. 

Favorite Superhero & Why: Superman. To be the most powerful being in the universe and still be humble is pretty cool.

Ieshe Washington

Sr. Engineering Manager

Background: I still remember the Intro to Computer Programming workshop I had in 4th grade – BASIC & floppy disks! Coupled with my love for math, I studied Math and Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign. I always liked debugging and breaking my programs. So naturally when presented with the choice of development or QA for my first job out of college, I chose QA. I have more than 20 years of experience in software testing and quality assurance, I believe quality is everyone’s responsibility. I came to SpotHero in 2018 as the QA Manager to build the QA team. Currently, I’m the engineering manager for the Activation squad. I’m enjoying working and learning with this team of extremely talented and cool people – engineers, product manager and designer – as we strive to deliver a seamless parking experience for our drivers.

Favorite Superhero & Why: Iron Man. Tony Stark is a genius, witty, the life of the party and always saves the day.

Want to join SpotHero?

You can see all of our open spots here

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